A Tale of Two Teams

The Vikings and Seattle share several elements in common -- the most important being that each is on the verge of a collapse that could deny them division titles.

When the Vikings look across the field Sunday at the Seahawks, they might well see a reflection of themselves.

Both teams came into the season as the odds-on favorite to win their respective divisions. Both got off to great starts. Both have dropped back toward the pack, losing tie-breakers to their division rivals. Both teams can move the ball effectively on the ground or through the air, but neither seems capable of stopping their opponents at key times.

These similarities aren't all good news and could come back to haunt one or both teams. The Vikings' demise has come on the road, where they have just a 2-4 record. The Seahawks have been their own worst enemy -- going 3-3 at home and losing a pair of games in which they had double-digit leads with three minutes to play. If they hold on to just those two games, they are 8-4 and looking at a potential first-round bye in the playoffs. Now they're struggling just to stay alive.

Both the Vikings and Seahawks are playing with a sense of desperation -- Seattle trying to stop its recent slide and the Vikings trying to hold serve at home to set up a divison-title game with the Packers in two weeks. Which team can keep their goal alive? We'll find out tomorrow.

SATURDAY NOTES
* The Vikings are 5-1 at home this season with their only loss coming vs. the free-falling Giants.
* Randy Moss has 39 career 100-yard games -- one short of the team record held by Cris Carter.
* Vikings coach Mike Tice spent most of career with the Seahawks, playing in 130 games for the team.
* The Vikings have just five interceptions this season -- three short of the team record for least in a season with eight.
* Mike Holmgren has a 6-10 career record vs. the Vikings -- 1-1 as the Seahawks head coach.
* In last year's meeting, Culpepper threw for three touchdowns -- of distances of 47, 45 and 43 yards.
* FOX Sports will be sending its A-team to cover the game with Joe Buck, Troy Aikman and Cris Collinsworth calling the game.
* Chris Hovan will be active Sunday and playing in the nickel defense.
* The Vikings will be sponsoring a Toys for Tots drive Sunday and ask fans to bring a new unwrapped toy to the Metrodome Sunday. Pickup points will be at all Metrodome entrances.

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